Trips to the ER while on vacation more common than you think

This is one of the busiest travel times of the year, and whether you're going to visit family or take a trip to the beach, there's a chance your vacation might include a stop in the emergency room.

Jason Ziegler and his family are packing for a trip to see relatives over the holidays. Unlike a recent vacation, this time they're hoping to spend a little more time getting some R&R, and less time in the ER.

"I tried to play it off and next day O just couldn't do it anymore and had to go to the emergency room and see what was going on, and ended up rupturing my eardrum and just had a horrible time the rest of the week," he says. 

Which is more common than you might think.

In fact, a new national survey by Orlando Health shows 1 out of 4 vacations actually include a trip to the ER. And, experts here should know.

Orlando is not only one of the busiest travel destinations in the country, it's also home to one of the busiest emergency rooms.

"We really see the gamut. If you think it, and you can imagine it, quite honestly, we've seen it," says Orlando Health ER physician Dr. Steven Corbett. He's treated so many people from so many places, he knows the word "pain" in 17 languages.

His first tip? Never go on vacation if you're not well to begin with.

"If you're ill or sick before you leave, and you wouldn't go to work that day, you probably shouldn't go to your vacation that day, as well," he advises.

He says too many people try to push it and end up in the ER. And, a surprising number forget to refill medications before they leave.

Corbett suggests using your phone to take photos of prescriptions and upload important images or x-rays.

"You'd be surprised at how many people have something brand new or acute, like an operation in their recent past, and have almost no details about who, what or why they had their procedure," Dr. Corbett says.

Lastly, if you're going out of the country, buy travelers insurance. Medicare and some private plans are no good outside the U.S.

It's best to be prepared, because no matter where you're headed, when it comes to your health, your trip can quickly go south.


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